Trail of the Week: Zion Traverse, Zion National Park

Photo: Elyse Ordorica

Our Trail of the Week feature is made possible through a partnership with Trail Run Project, a crowd-sourced collaboration by and for the running community. Thanks to Tom Robson for mapping and describing this route.

Truly a bucket-list run for the serious adventure runner, this traverse of beautiful Zion National Park in Utah approaches 50 miles in length and runs the gamut with regards to elevation change, temperatures, water scarcity and desert terrain.

Runners go both east-to-west and west-to-east in this adventure, starting at either the Lee Pass Trailhead or the East Rim Trailhead.

Along the way, runners will see just what’s so special about Zion—the breathtaking cliffs, high plateaus, winding rivers and more.

A single-day run is doable if you’re an advanced runner, but many do the traverse as a multi-day backpacking adventure. If you do the latter, you need a permit.

RELATED: 8 Epic Running Adventures in America’s National Parks

The Data

Miles: 48.7

Runnable: 91 percent

Average Grade: 70 percent

Max Grade: 47 percent

Total Ascent: 6,467 feet

Total Descent: -6,780 feet

Highest Elevation: 7,445 feet

For a closer look, check out the interactive map, data, photos and virtual run simulator courtesy of Trail Run Project:

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